While on vacation at a friend's cabin this summer, I ran into another friend I grew up with that I hadn't seen for a long time. Her grandmother's cabin is in the same area. She mentioned that she had to get her two year old little boy over to the creek to get his picture taken. Apparently, her father took each of his own children's pictures the summer that they were two years old at the creek up at the cabin. He had continued the tradition with all of his grandchildren, but wasn't able to get to the cabin this summer. She headed out to the creek, camera around her neck, dirty but happy little boy by the hand to get his picture.

Can you imagine having a photo of everyone in your family for two generations at the same location at about the same age? What an awesome collection that must be!

Well, our family photo traditions aren't that old, but they're good nonetheless. We attend a Swedish party at Christmastime called a Julefest, where we have someone take a picture of all of us in front of the giant Christmas tree that we dance around at the party. It's great to look through and see us grow from a family of 2 to 3 to more.

It's never too late to start a tradition. Choose a time when you can get a photo of your family at the same time each year (holidays are good, since you're usually together and the camera is probably handy), and make an effort to get someone to take your picture together. It's not the same as a professional family portrait, but it's not supposed to be. It's just another little record of you and your family as you grow and progress.

Make an extra-special effort to take traditional family photographs. You won't regret it!

by--Leslie Woolf